When a physician or nurse practitioner refers a patient to a RAC for LBP, they first meet with an Advanced Practice Provider (APP), who is an experienced chiropractor, physiotherapist and/or a nurse practitioner, in their community. The APP provides them with:
- A rapid low back pain assessment
- Education about their condition
- An evidence-based plan they can follow to manage it
Patients who need more advanced surgical assessment and management are referred to a RAC Practice Lead, who is usually in a hospital. This Practice Lead can provide a more in-depth assessment, order images, if required, and provide a surgical referral, if needed.
Ontario launched RACs in late 2017 and expanded them across the province.